Friday, March 14, 2008

Obama's Smokin' Gun: Damn, Rebb'n Wright!

Well, you knew it had to happen later or sooner.

The MSM has toyed around with coming out and playing the Jeremiah Wright Card for awhile now. On the heels of Ferraro-Gate, you knew there would have to be something to restore balance. And here it is.

The cable news yappers, and talk radio folks are having a field day with this one, as expected.

The Rev. Jeremiah Wright may have stepped down as pastor at Barack Obama's church in Chicago, but his sermons are still echoing through the presidential campaign -- some rather vile ones, as captured in a video that recently made its way to YouTube.

As our friends at The Swamp reported a little while ago, Obama's campaign is trying to put some more distance between the senator and the preacher, but given the focus on race and gender this week, expect this to simmer for a while.

"It just came to me within the past few weeks, ya'll, why so many folk are hating on Barack Obama," Wright said in the video of a Christmas sermon at Trinity United Church of Christ. "He doesn’t fit the model. He ain't white. He ain't rich and he ain't privileged. Hillary (Clinton) fits the mold."

This from CNN, attributed to an Obama campaign spokesman: "Sen. Obama has said before that he profoundly disagrees with some of the statements and positions of Rev. Wright … Sen. Obama deplores divisive statements, whether they come from his supporters, the supporters of his opponent, talk radio or anywhere else."
Let's be real: any of us who grew up in a black church, especially a baptist church, knows preachers are prone to say some off the wall idd'ish every now and then. If you're not familiar with the cadence, the typical call and response, the hoopin' and hollerin', the hymns, etc. you could be thrown. Some of it's for show, but there's plenty of substance there too. Of course, you could get caught up on the sizzle and miss the steak if you not familiar with the routine.

So I guess that why even though I agree with about 90% of what Reverend Wright is saying here, I definitely could see why white America (specifically the media) is caught up on this one. Never mind the fact that the sermon (which is being soundbitten completely out of context) is essentially aimed at black folks who are questioning Obama's ability to lead the nation due to his skin color, not a racist rant at whites. Also, cluelessly overlook the fact that this sermon was recorded around Christmas, days before votes were even cast in Iowa. Never mind the fact that other than the loose relationship of "spiritual advisor", Wright isn't even officially associated with Obama's campaign.

Nope, all the matters is here's an angry black man talking loud and greasy about elite, rich white guys in general, whom, let's agree, America as a whole doesn't care too much for anyway. That's what will be taken and carried, and hey, this being a game and all, I suppose it's fair.

The thing that really pisses me off, however, is the implication that since Wright's said some pretty gangster idd'ish at various points in the past, this means Obama by proxy just has to believe everything his pastor espouses, because, well, he does go to the same church.


Wright is a preacher. His congregation doesn't absorb each and every one of his views by simple osmosis. My pastor frequently says things I don't completely agree with, but guess what? That's fine! I agree with him on the things that matter most, and my relationship with God isn't dependent on whatever my pastor might say on a given week. I would suspect that most churchgoers, black or white, feel the same.

Painting Barry with the "he goes to the church, he must believe all this" brush discounts his ability to think, reason, and draw his own conclusions about things. It's wrong when people use the words of a few evangelical preachers (John Hagee, stand up!) to project similar views of their millions of parishioners. And it's wrong here.

None of this matters of course. The media wanted something to nail Obama with, since they're of course so conscious about being "fair to both sides" nowadays. And this package, wrapped 3 months ago, was ready to be opened at any time. I suppose you could call it a mere coincidence that it just happens to surface now, just as Obama's regaining momentum, and Clinton is reeling from that Ferraro BS. Barry's opponents (on both sides) have been searching for that special item to give Hillary the edge going into blue collar Pennsylvania.

I hope you enjoy the gift.

Question: What did you think of Reverend Wright's sermon? Do you think it's fair to play "guilt by association" with someone's preacher?

Barack Obama's pastor's words echo through campaign [LA Times]

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